The post-vaccine meetings started with so much promise, didn’t they? Our pent-up desire for others and life in general increased over the months, as did our impatience for summer dates like drinking patio beers or visiting the beach.
At this point, however, you may have realized that your expectations do not match reality. The beers on the patio are hot and you burned yourself on the beach.
Been hot vax? More like a lukewarm vax summer.
It might be time to break away from your situation, but – as the name suggests – it’s simply a situation, a nebulous relationship that neither of you have defined. Even so, it doesn’t mean that the person you spent time with shouldn’t be treated with respect.
Whether you call it a situation, a romantic relationship, or an affair, we asked experts how to end such a relationship courteously but firmly.
What if I don’t know if I want to end things?
It is entirely reasonable to be on the fence as to whether to do this in the first place. With COVID restrictions relaxed, some people feel pressured to go out and have fun both for all ages and for X – especially if you already have a willing participant under lock and key. And there is nothing wrong with that.
It’s time to say goodbye, however, the moment when the drama trumps the fun, said Dr Nikki Coleman, licensed psychologist and relationship expert. Sex therapist Dr Kate Balestrieri echoed this: If you are uncomfortable with the person you saw, or if a sense of obligation is the driving force to continue spending time with them, these are signals the situation has followed its course.
Also, if you don’t feel valued, loved, or seen in this arrangement – and there’s no hope it will change – just move on, said Dr Carla Marie Manly, clinical psychologist, speaker and author of Smart Date.
Even if this isn’t an exclusive or long-term relationship, you deserve a relationship that you are still satisfied with. Manly notes that the quality of our relationships affects us over time; Value yourself above any hookup and leave it behind.
Should I break up in person?
Yes, breaking up face-to-face is the most respectful way to go about it, Manly said, but if you have security concerns – always prioritize those – you can obviously avoid that. If it is not possible to meet in person, you can make a phone call.
Coleman agreed that verbal communication is the best, even if it is using a voice note or a chat app like Marco polo, a mix of WhatsApp and FaceTime that allows people to send video messages back and forth. Speaking “shows that you took the other person seriously and appreciated them as a person,” Coleman said. Even though it was not a “serious” relationship, it is still important.
Speaking “shows that you took the other person seriously and appreciated them as a person”
Texting is a last resort, Manly said, but if you do, send a text that you would feel good to receive.
What should I say?
For Coleman, the conversation is where the limits are tested. You don’t need to delve into your emotions or the details. You can say something succinct and factual like, “I enjoyed being with you, but I’m looking for something different at this point,” and leave it there.
Since the terms of the relationship were initially vague, moving on can feel messy, according to Manly. A direct break is best so you both know unequivocally where you are at, even if you weren’t while you were logging in. She offered words that acknowledged that this was an indefinite relationship: “I know we haven’t defined our connection, and it looks like we’ve gone with the flow. I’ve done a lot of soul searching. and I know in my heart that it’s time for me to move on. “
By setting limits in your relationships, even informal ones, you are setting limits with yourself. In the future, you may find yourself looking for connections that better match what you want.
Depending on the situation, the two people involved may be indifferent – or one may have been more invested than the other. If you are breaking up a relationship that maybe wanted more (or just wanted it to continue), you can keep space, or be present, for their feelings.
Credit: vicky leta / mashable
“When you break up a situation with someone whose feelings or sense of pride are likely to be hurt, it’s important to acknowledge their feelings and concerns without getting dragged into negative dynamics,” Manly said.
One example she offered if your ex now feels rejected was to say, “I see you are sad. I’m sorry you’re in pain. Although I know that my decision to go ahead is what is best for me, I am happy to speak with you about your feelings. “
If your connection is persistent, Coleman advises you to recognize that the two of you are in different places and that’s okay. Her advice is to be firm within your limits, but also genuine and compassionate towards the other person.
Unless there’s a security issue, don’t ghost. Be responsible and respectful to that person.
“We live in a culture where people, sex and romance are becoming so trivialized and dehumanized because of the mechanics of technology and dating apps,” Balestrieri said. “So I think it’s really important – unless there’s a threat to your safety or someone who doesn’t respect your boundaries – to avoid ghosting.”
What if we go online during the COVID pandemic?
If you’ve gotten through the pandemic with one connection and want to end it now, be aware of the single connection you share. The experience of going through such a traumatic time together often creates an intense bond, Manly explained, which can make farewell more difficult than if it were an ordinary relationship.
Given that, Coleman said he’s mindful of timing – but you don’t have to set your actions around someone else’s timing. If your partner is in a vulnerable place, you should still end the relationship when you need to, but be patient and kind when you do (which you should do anyway).
You have every right to end any kind of relationship, but – especially with quaran bonds – be aware of the time you have spent together.
Both Manly and Balestrieri have said to honor the time you’ve spent and the challenges you’ve been through together, and also honor the feelings that arise when you finish things. Recognize the ordeals of COVID and how they made you feel, and make room for mourning and mourning.
“Be clear that the last year and more has been intense, and we all wanted a little comfort and connection; that they provided it at a time when you really needed it,” Coleman said, “but, again, you are now in a different space. “
At this point, Balestrieri said it was okay to give himself permission to move on. In post-immunization life, you may want to explore relationships with other people or go inward for some personal development.
“People can feel very torn up or feel like it’s scary to leave… a comfortable connection situation,” she said. “But if that doesn’t go well, not only is it okay, but it’s important to move forward so that you can make room for this new period of personal growth.”